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New Connecticut Librarians: Overview

A place to start for librarians who are new to working in Connecticut

Are you new here?

If you're new to working in Connecticut libraries, this page is for you! Also be sure to check out the Newbie Roundtable from CLC.

Other Pages

Be sure to look at these other useful pages:

Connecticut Library Acronyms and Terms

Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a list of Frequently Asked Questions asked by people new to working in libraries in Connecticut.

Question: People return books that belong to other libraries to my library and we ship them back to the other library, but it's not by U.S. Mail or UPS. How do they get back to the other library?
Answer: Your library uses a service called Connecticar, or Ccar for short, to ship library materials to other libraries. Ccar is a physical delivery service and it provides delivery to 220+ public and academic libraries in the state. Ccar delivers any of the items that people return to your library or put in your book-drop that belong to another library in Connecticut as well as your library's Interlibrary Loan items. If your library is part of a network that shares a circulation system, Ccar delivers your library's "transit holds" or "circ holds." Ccar is a service of the Division of Library Development, Connecticut State Library.

Question: What's up with all the acronyms?!
Answer: We can't help it - librarians like acronyms! Since we are in Connecticut, all the acronyms being with 'C,' which makes it even more confusing. If you come across an acronym and don't know what it means, you can check out this list of commonly used Connecticut library acronyms.

Question: Speaking of confusing acronyms, what's the difference between CSL, CLA, and CLC?
Answer: They all begin with C, which stands for Connecticut, and they all serve libraries in the state, but they are different organizations.

  • The Connecticut State Library (CSL) is a state-funded agency that runs the state library in Hartford, administers the state archives and public records program, provides two Library Service Centers in Middletown and Willimantic with circulating collections, and offers a robust Continuing Education program, among many other things. iCONN and Ccar are part of the State Library.
  • The Connecticut Library Association (CLA) is the professional association for librarians, library employees, and library students in the state of Connecticut. Anyone can join! CLA offers a large annual conference for all members as well as smaller conferences and meetings for sections, such as the Support Staff section, College & University Libraries section, and Technical Services section. Many events are announced on their Facebook page.
  • The Connecticut Library Consortium (CLC) is a membership collaborative for libraries that arranges for product and service discounts for libraries, administers materials swap circuits, and supports subject and region-specific roundtables, such as Children's Librarians Northwest, Library Newbies, and Interlibrary Loan East. CLC also offers a popular job listing service.

Question: I work in a public library. People from other towns can use their public library card to check out material in my library. Why can they do this and how does it work?
Answer: That's a statewide service called borrowIT CT, formerly known as Connecticard. Someone with a current public library card from one Connecticut town can use that card in any other public library in Connecticut. They can then return the item back to the owning library directly or they can return it to their local library so that the local library can send it back to the owning library using Connecticar - the statewide library delivery service. There is a small monetary reimbursement for participating in borrowIT CT. For details, try the Regulations and the accompanying Clarification Statements.

Question: I'm a one-person department, and I have a lot of questions about how other libraries do things. Who do I ask?
Answer: Join some email discussion lists on your topic, or try a roundtable from the Connecticut Library Consortium or a section from the Connecticut Library Association. There's also CAHSL for health sciences librarians, CASL for school library media specialists, and SNELLA for law library personnel. There are peer groups for all specializations and types of libraries.

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